How to hang outdoor string lights - Flip The Switch
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How to hang outdoor string lights – Flip The Switch

string lights illuminate decks, porches, and other outdoor areas around your home. they are hung as Christmas decorations and as permanent light sources. Whether you use these lights for everyday lighting or as accents for special occasions, there are many things to consider when hanging string lights.

measurements and preparation

Large areas may need more threads than small areas, but there are more things to consider when planning your display. You’ll also need to figure out how close you plan to hang each line of bulbs. tight string shades cast more intense lighting than scattered settings, and settings with more space between each line cast softer light across the area.

Reading: How to connect multiple string lights

common patterns to use when installing string lights

many homeowners install party lights in a straight line based on existing architecture. these strings follow the ceiling beams and cover wide areas. other options hang lower or on guide wires between outside structures. you can use v-patterns to accent lighting or x-patterns to accent light around specific areas.

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This is where you get creative. trace where you will install the lights and use a tape measure to determine the precise distance from start to finish. be sure to leave extra room if you plan to let the strings hang down a bit between their connection points. draped lights hang in loose arches, so consider the extra distance when you do your math.

once you know the distance you need to cover, you can choose your lights. As with all outdoor lighting, it’s important to check for wet-rated lights if you plan to hang the strings in uncovered areas. moisture resistant lights are acceptable on porches and many other spaces with roof coverage.

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try and hang string lights

test each string of lights before installing anything. just plug them in and make sure they all turn on. if everything works, turn off the lights and start. if you’re working with particularly large or delicate bulbs, you can remove them from the strings while you work. Because most string lights plug into wall outlets, you won’t need to work with a lot of electrical cords. just hang your strands along the traced lines and leave enough room to reach the outlet.

installations on rafters and wooden beams

For permanent installations, you can use a staple gun to secure the lights to the joists and joists. These tools fire the fastener directly into the wood, so it’s important to check the depth setting before you begin. the proper depth holds the cable to the wood without cutting the connection or putting too much pressure on the cable itself. start this installation at the point closest to the outlet and remember to leave enough space to plug in the lights once the installation is complete. this method creates clean lines directly on porch ceilings and garden walls.

Outdoor String Light IdeasInstallations on Guide Wires

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guide wires provide much more flexibility than surface installations. they hold threads in place over wide areas, so you can create loose canopies of light. To achieve this classic look, you must first install eyebolts. these bolts have loops on their exposed ends and fasten the cables to solid wood supports. screw them into the points you chose earlier. each string of lights needs at least two eyebolts, one at each end. You can also use an eyebolt as a connection point for multiple threads. just look for the points in your design where multiple wires join.

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Once the eyebolts are in place, you can install the cables and turnbuckles. Turnbuckles connect to one end of each thread, directly to the eyebolt, and minimize wind twist. simply wrap the cables around the eyebolts (or turnbuckles) and secure them in place with cable ties. After these cables are installed, secure the string lights in place with cable ties.

how to work with multiple threads

If you need to cover a large area or provide dense coverage to a small area, you can often connect multiple wires for greater length. Pluggable string lights have male and female plugs for quick installation. check your manual to find out how many wires connect to a single outlet. if your devices support additional connections, you may be able to work with three or four threads on a single continuous line.

It doesn’t take long to set up the party lights, and if you trace your work first, you can create all sorts of attractive patterns. Whether you need permanent outdoor lighting or a fun accent for special events, there are plenty of ways to use string lights outside your home. *disclaimer: destination lighting content is for information only. It is strongly recommended that you consult a professional before attempting any lighting or wiring project. the company is not responsible for the misuse of its content.

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